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Old Apr 14, 2006, 1:33 AM   #1
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Anyone know where I can send a 4500 in for repairs besides Nikon? I sent it to them and they sent it back marked as grey market. The place I bought it from saye it isn't but I am forced to believe it is as Nikon won't fix it. It makes a repeated clicking sound when you turn the camera on and off. It also has a hard time if any autofucussing. I am aware that the repair cost may exceed the worth of the camera, but considering i just purchased it last year and have well over $200 in accessories, I'd hate to trash it. Is there another Nikon out there now that might use the same size filters or remote control? Thanks again.
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Old Apr 18, 2006, 9:40 AM   #2
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Nikon regional distributors (Nikon USA, Nikon Canada, Nikon Europe) will refuse to service a gray market camera (one not intended for sale in the region it was purchased in), even if you are willing to pay them to service it.

Some of the Brooklyn based scam artists sell gray market cameras, bypassing the Regional Distributors to get a better price. Then, they tend to try and charge you ridiculous amounts for accessories, shipping, etc. to increase their profit margins more.

It's easy to spot a gray market CP 4500 in the U.S., since U.S. models will have a green stripe on the grip, and models intended for sale elsewhere use a red stripe on the grip.

For other models, Nikon simply looks up the Serial Number to see if it's gray market or not.

I don't know where you're get it serviced.

Are you sure it's actually defective? If you leave Autofocus in Continuous, you'll hear clicking noises (it's the Autofocus working continuously as you move the camera).


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Old Apr 18, 2006, 10:31 AM   #3
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It does click and it does it very loudly unlike when I first got it. It starts the loud clicking when you first turn the camera on and when I shut it down. I know that it didn't do this when I first received it. As far as te auto focus goes. It has a very hard time autofocusing. When you look at the veiw finder, you can see it go from very blurry to clear then back again and finally if you use the zoom to zoom in or out a bit, it will focus and hold focus if that makes any sense. But until you actually use the zoom a bit, it rarely if at all will focus. I guess I should have done more research before I bought it, but the store said it was definitely not gray market and I didn't know about the red stripe. It's my fault no doubt! It just that I really like the camera and I'd love to have it fixed if possible. Any other ideas? I did take the housing off but, I still can't see past the inner wrapping (whatever is making the loud clicking sound seems to be attached to the focus mechanism which is surrounded by tons of elctronics) and I didn't want to dismantle it further unless there is no hope of someone else maybe being able to fix it. Thanks again for your assistance!
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Old Apr 18, 2006, 10:52 AM   #4
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It's normal to get some focus hunting (what you're describing when you see it trying to lock focus) in less than optimum lighting (for example, indoors in a typical home interior). The system needs to find enough contrast in the subject to focus. If your subject doesn't have enough contrast, it won't focus.

It's also normal for the AF mechanism to be a bit loud on the CP models (hearing clicking noises is a common complaint, even with a brand new camera in perfect working condition).

I'd reset the camera to factory defaults first. You'll see a Reset Default menu choice on the 3rd page of your menus when in any of the record modes.

If memory serves, it might default to continuous AF. If you want to eliminate the continuous focusing, set it to Single instead.

See the record options for your camera on this page:

http://www.steves-digicams.com/2002_...n4500_pg4.html

Using single AF, it's best to try and lock focus with a half press of the shutter button first on an areas with good contrast. Then, while keeping the shutter button pressed down half way, reframe so that your subject is in the desired portion of the frame and press the shutter button the rest of the way down.

If light is too low to get a focus lock on your subject, try to find something about the same distance from the camera with more contrast, lock focus with a half press of the shutter button on that. Then reframe and shoot, pressing the shutter button the rest of the way down.

As for using zoom, your lens is more than twice as bright at it's wide angle lens position versus it's longest zoom setting. So, not as much light reaches the sensor for autofocus if you use too much zoom in low light (and a well lit interior is low light to a camera).

Some of the Coolpix models default at startup to their longest focal length (where the lens can't get as much light). Your model lets you change it's startup behavior (you can set it to to start at the widest lens setting, or stay at the last used setting)

Try it outside in good light and see if it's not working correctly before assuming it's defective. It sounds like it's probably normal behavior to me.

You also mentioned accessories.. Do you have any extra filters or lenses on the camera now? If so, remove them and see if it's better. Some filters (for example a Polarizer) will cause signficant loss of light, making it much harder for the camera to "see" well enough to focus. Ditto for Teleconverter lenses (you lose light when you use them, and some may cause enough softness for the Autofocus to have difficulty).


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Old Apr 18, 2006, 3:42 PM   #5
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Just wanted to say thanks for all help and info. I'll try resetting everything back to default and disabling the autofocus as I don't need it for my application anyway and see what happens then. I'll post again when I give it a try. I'm on an oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico right now and won't be able to work with it until I get back home by this weekend. Thanks again.
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